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Professor Peter Stoneley – University of Reading

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Professor Peter Stoneley

Photograph of Professor Peter Stoneley



Areas of Interest

Research groups / Centres


Job Title: Professor of US Literature and Culture

Responsibilities: Head of Department of English Literature

Teaching: I contribute to the courses on Twentieth-Century American Literature, Writing America, and Wilde.

Areas of Interest: I work mainly on nineteenth- and twentieth-century US literature. My research has nearly always been about how literature intersects with history, and with other cultural forms. My first book, Mark Twain and the Feminine Aesthetic (Cambridge UP, 1992), explored Twain's engagement with the emergent cultural and political power of women - how and why he supported, ridiculed, and sentimentalised women in the public sphere. I subsequently investigated the relations between writing, childhood, and commerce in Consumerism and American Girls' Literature, 1860-1940 (Cambridge UP, 2003). Later work has often had a queer studies and inter-disciplinary focus, as with A Queer History of the Ballet (Routledge, 2007). For a full list of publications, see Peter Stoneley Publications.

Postgraduate Supervision: I have supervised doctoral work on Dickinson, on maps and literature, and on US women's writing. Get in touch if you are interested in working with me on US literature and/or queer studies.

Research Projects: In 2013 I was principal investigator for "Enemies of the State?" Funded by the AHRC, this project focused on the internment of Irish patriots in Reading Prison following the Easter Rising. Working in collaboration with the Berkshire Record Office, we re-examined the historical resources, and opened up debate around possible linkages between internment following the Easter Rising and post-9/11 issues of counter-terrorism and civil liberties. I was also principal investigator for the Heritage Lottery-funded project, 'Oscar Wilde and Reading Gaol,' which ran from February 2014 to April 2015, and have been co-investigator on the current Easter Rising project, 'Universities of Revolution.'  Currently I am in the early planning stages of a project on illustrated editions of The Ballad of Reading Gaol.

Academic Affiliations: Modern Language Association; Mark Twain Circle of America; British Association of American Studies; British Association of Nineteenth-Century American Studies.

For a full list of my publications, please see Peter Stoneley Publications


Enemies of the State

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